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Home » 2016 Summer Seminar » Dube - seminar introduction (Mon., 7/25)

Movement in East Asia
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7/25/2016 12:57:23 PM

cindyn
cindyn
Posts: 33
Subject: Japanese Immigration Problems
I knew Japan has strict laws on immigration so the article was not really surprising to me but the reason behind it was. I always thought Japan was a very friendly and welcoming country to tourists but not so much to expats or foreigners looking for citizenship. I felt this was due to the strong Japanese culture of being well-mannered and polite to all, even though they may feel otherwise. Until reading this article, I believed Japan wanted to keep their culture and race pure and homogenous. It was kinda a shock to know that Japanese didn't want to offer citizenship not due to racism but to financial reasons. It blew my mind because I never even considered that idea.
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7/25/2016 1:02:04 PM

mhagiwara
mhagiwara
Posts: 32
Subject: Japan's Growth Rate
For the past several years Japan has suffered from an extremely low growth rate. There are several elements that have led to this severe problem, among those the treatment of postpartum women. Traditionally, expectant women and women with young children, are expected to remain at home to take care of the children. Their husbands are to be the source of income while the woman takes care of the needs at home. Women are expected to leave their jobs once pregnant, and even though given maternity leave so they may return to work, many do not. This traditional view, however, has led to a movement among today's modern woman to shy away from getting pregnant because they realize that having a child essentially means giving up their careers. Japanese women want to aspire to be more than just mothers-they want to fulfill their own acheivements and goals. Corporations and companies are now beginning to accommodate to this trend and providing for better conditions for expecting women and those who have young children, hoping that this can ignite a trend towards positive population growth.
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7/25/2016 1:14:14 PM

cgonzalez
cgonzalez
Posts: 59
Subject: Movement
It was interesting hear about what it means to travel, what a traveler brings when they travel is not just materials but also ideas and arts. As Chinese move around the world they bring their culture with them and with that they integrate it with the cultures they encounter. I think its really cool that this happens because I love to travel and I love interacting and telling people how we do things here and I love to learn how they do things in their countries. It's intereresting to realize what a big impact travelers have on cultures around the world.
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7/25/2016 1:31:36 PM

cindyn
cindyn
Posts: 33
Subject: Chinese Marriages
Through my travels of Asia, I knew of pockets of Asian countries had African traders and merchants. I didn't expect many of these African traders and merchants marrying Asian women just to further their business ventures and vise versa. Chinese marrying Africans as a safety net from the government and their tendency to repossess property. Not all couples married for convenience or financial gain but for love. I am a little wary of those couples but many marriage can be said was done due to mutual gain. It reminds me of a story about arranged marriages between Vietnamese women and Korean men. Most of these women live in poverty and arranged marriages to strangers seems like a good way out of that life. Sad to say, most of these women face a life of multiple hardships.
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7/25/2016 2:30:52 PM

kluna
kluna
Posts: 82
Subject:
I was mind blown by Stephen Cheung’s presentation on the LA and LB ports. I know very little about trade, but I was amazed to find out that throughout my trip, I basically traveled to all of the main location of trade (Shanghai, LA, Chicago)! I am so impressed that our area’s trade is much larger, economically speaking, than many other countries in the world! I truly enjoyed his presentation because it got me thinking about a lot of possible ramification of trade for both countries. When he was talking about JC Penny and other businesses’ effect of shipping during slowdowns, before their 4 corners approach, it reminded me of an article that I read last year on how the slow down at the ports affected the sale of Chinese New Year products (http://www.npr.org/2015/02/14/386199926/west-coast-port-closures-are-hitting-several-industries-hard). I guess this isn’t just an issue of LA and the US, but also for people around the world and our cultural traditions. I wonder what will happen in the next few years once the Panama Canal is open for more shipping?
edited by kluna on 7/25/2016
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7/25/2016 2:51:52 PM

mhagiwara
mhagiwara
Posts: 32
Subject: Japan's Two Religions
One of the topics brought up during our introductions this morning was the question about the two belief systems in Japan. I am half Japanese and half Korean and I grew up with no real religious affiliation but I knew that when my parents were young they grew up with a Buddhist mindset. To my surprise, when I went to Japan to teach from '03-'06, I not only saw Buddhist influences but also Shinto. What is really interesting to see is that harmony between the two religions, especially considering that in Japanese history the two were at odds. Like Clay mentioned, birth is celebrated through Shinto but death is honored through Buddhism. Japanese people today balance both belief systems today; for example when they speak of nature and the environment, they believe that there are kami, or spirits, that surround us and guide us. However they might also visit Buddhist temples to pray for their health or the health of a loved one. This coexistence is definitely a unique one to say the least.
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7/25/2016 3:03:30 PM

mhagiwara
mhagiwara
Posts: 32
Subject: Los Angeles as a World Economic Power
It was enlightening to find out how powerful the greater Los Angeles area is when it comes to the economic impact and influence. Growing up in Los Angeles I just thought of LA as just a large urban city with beaches fifteen minutes away, mountains and amusement parks thirty minutes away, and traffic gridlock! Learning about how much influence Los Angeles has on world trade and movement of people will give me more information that I can also use to teach my students about diversity and also how they can prepare themselves for an evolving society/economy. We know that foreign companies are heavily investing in the greater LA area so the new generation of students must be aware of this changing world and economy and adapt themselves in order to succeed.
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7/25/2016 3:44:48 PM

rmcgill
rmcgill
Posts: 7
Subject:
Globalization has given tremendous leverage to capital because capital can be easily moved around. Its not surprising that capital would move to areas that are politically stable and have a large number of reliable workers for low wages. I hope economic opportunity will be linked with economic justice and environmental protections.
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7/25/2016 3:52:36 PM

cgonzalez
cgonzalez
Posts: 59
Subject:
The presentations by Stephen Cheung, Los Angeles World Trade Center was eye opening on how important Los Angeles is not just to California but to the whole nation. He made a good point about how we need to keep on educating out youth so we can keep up with the demand of workers in the city from low skilled to highly skilled.
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7/25/2016 3:58:04 PM

kluna
kluna
Posts: 82
Subject:
The map that Clay showed during class without the borders got me thinking about the creation of nationalism within Asia. I have noticed that most students know little to nothing about Asia, including the countries that are located in Asia, and the cultures that lay within the boundaries. I think that it would be interesting to discuss the islands that are currently in dispute and pose the question to students about how to settle the debate. How do we decide who owns what? What leads to the conflict between countries in a region? And how does nationalism and history effect relations between a country and its neighbors?
edited by kluna on 7/25/2016
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7/25/2016 5:40:16 PM

yyan
yyan
Posts: 20
Subject:
Interracial marriages have become more and more popular in China. When I was little, I only see foreigners on TV. Now people from different countries are living everywhere in China, especially in big cities. Chinese reality TV shows are full of foreigners with different accents and mixed-blood children. It is possible for people from any countries to fit in China as long as they can speak Mandarin.
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7/25/2016 5:58:11 PM

juanae
juanae
Posts: 57
Subject:
Th article about Japanese immigration policy, helped explAined why they are a closed country to immigration. I have no idea that Japan had no birthright citizenship like the U.S. and Mexico. I guess is arrogant of me to think that all countries had the same policy.
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7/25/2016 5:58:40 PM

skroop
skroop
Posts: 96
Subject: Reflection: Monday Session
Lecture by Stephen Cheung: LA World Trade Center
I was shocked at the size of LA county GDP, population, and containers coming in and out of both the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Even more surprising was the top 10 container ports in the world, #1-8 being ports in China, #9 in Dubai, and #10 in LA. It is also interesting to hear about the extreme trade imbalance and all the empty boxes that we are sending back to China. I think this was a bit of common knowledge, however, this imbalance was far greater than I imagined.

I am curious what the effects of a Panama Canal expansion could be on jobs and the amount of containers coming into LA and Long Beach. Is this expansion still a consideration or has it completely been abandoned?
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7/25/2016 6:02:15 PM

rbrady
rbrady
Posts: 39
Subject:
Interesting ideas about commercial farming in Africa for export to China. This could be a great opportunity for both parties. Yet the realities of current dynamics and lessons from the past should be discussed. In such arrangements there is the possibility for unattended consequences. The Irish Potato famine was so destructive for the local Irish who depended on one staple crop to feed their families on subsistence farming and millions starved although there was a striving commercial farming industry to continued to ship grains to Britain albeit eventually under armed guard. Also the successful commercial farms of Europeans that were confiscated by corrupt locals likewise caused famine for the locals.
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7/25/2016 6:13:03 PM

rbrady
rbrady
Posts: 39
Subject: Immigration to Japan
There could be some interesting comparisons of immigration to Japan, Germany, and the United States. Japan and Germany appear to be historically monocultural. Immigration appears to only work when immigrants blend in fully to the dominant culture in both Japan and Germany. To not do this completely currently leaves one marginalized on the fringes of society or considered foreign. To have two cultural identities or more is not uncommon particularity in Los Angeles. This appears to not be the case in Japan currently and as the population declines and requires immigration these notions will have to be discussed.
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7/25/2016 6:38:29 PM

juanae
juanae
Posts: 57
Subject:
I was reading, "China's Second Continent," I could see why some people in Africa see the Chinese as taking over. I immediately thought of the European colonization of Africa that has had devastating effects in the whole continent. For a lot of African people foreigners had not have a positive impact on their countries. There is still a lot resentment towards foreigner, even if the Chinese are really trying to help Africa.
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7/25/2016 7:30:05 PM

aschleicher
aschleicher
Posts: 44
Subject: Optional Readings - Movement of Chinese labor for war support
The historic issue of Chinese manpower is prevalent in the South China Morning Post article that details Chinese workers in Europe during World War I, and the heavy influence of Chinese workers in Russia during the war. The upcoming book on the issue written by Mark O'Neill demonstrates how Chinese workers were recruited by private Russian companies, and the exporting of people for the war effort. How does this compare to the importing of Chinese labor for U.S. railways? And, how often since World War I has there been a migration of Chinese manpower to help support other wars?


The South China Morning Post article on the Chinese volunteers who worked and fought in the Spanish Civil War sheds light on the otherwise European volunteers for the war. The East Asian nation has been involved in the historical events that shaped Europe in the 20th century. Why is attention coming to the Chinese workers only recently?
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7/25/2016 8:12:06 PM

gtyau
gtyau
Posts: 20
Subject: French's "Chinese Second Continent..." excerpt
Prior to reading this excerpt I never really considered Chinese nationals migrating to Sub-Saharan Africa. I know growing up in Hawaii, where there is a prevalence of Asian ethnicity and cultures present, and a lot of "history" taught about Asians in Hawaii (both pre and post statehood), I never once heard about Chinese migration elsewhere besides the continental US and Hawaii. When I traveled abroad during college, throughout Europe, it was so interesting to meet Chinese people in England, Scotland, Spain, Italy and France that didn't necessarily speak English like I did, but rather spoke only Chinese & Spanish or Chinese & French. This excerpt further opened my eyes to the reality that the "history" we're taught here in the states (even in a state as "diverse" as Hawaii) is always biased and limited to those who select the stories to tell. It's far too easy to stay stuck in a comfortable bubble.

Another thing that struck me is how "wealth" is so circumstantial and relative to those who have or don't have whatever the units that determine wealth are. In a somewhat traditional, or narrow, view of migration patterns I find myself reflecting on time spent in rural China in 2010 where I witnessed communities I perceived as poor or working class (through my American lens) but similar communities send people to Sub-Saharan Africa where they become the managers of people who may have considerably less wealth. Reading French's excerpt reminded me of cycles of exploitation and oppression throughout history.

A question I had was what happened to that promised $5 billion (to the AU)? Also, was there follow through with the 30 hospitals, 100 rural schools, training for 15,000 local professionals, and just how many "trade and economic" zones were created and maintained since 2001 in Sub-Saharan Africa. I guess that would lead to a great unit for a history or social studies class, or even an econ class: to research foreign investments and infrastructure in Sub-Saharan Africa between the late 20th century and now.
edited by gtyau on 7/25/2016
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7/25/2016 8:15:01 PM

victoriachan
victoriachan
Posts: 27
Subject: Japanese Immigration Problems
You bring up a really good point about lax immigration in the U.S. because at least the U.S. is allowing people in at all in comparison. It’s not a perfect system (immigration law is so convoluted and there are so many ways to bypass the laws), but at least we’re not completely barring people from entering.

Something I was also thinking about were potential reasons for why Japan is hesitant to let Chinese people in. I know that during WWII, Japan occupied China because it was trying to be the imperialist/leaders of the East. After the war ended, Japan lost face, and I wonder if that has any effect on their perceptions of Chinese immigrants. Japan might not want to admit that they need Chinese help because it would mean that China has successfully claimed that title they wanted. Granted, I don’t know if this is true; it is just conjecture. This is where I would like to know more about Japanese culture and Japanese-Chinese relations to have a more informed opinion.
edited by victoriachan on 7/25/2016
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7/25/2016 8:32:46 PM

gtyau
gtyau
Posts: 20
Subject: Marsh's Afro-Chinese Marriage & two Japanese immigration articles
Reading the Marsh's article about interracial marriage in Guanzhou in conjunction with the two articles about immigration in Japan (Yoshida & Smith) made me think about this: http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/9/9/hafu-in-japan-mixed-race.html

I'm not exactly sure where I'm going with this post, but just wanted to share a connection. The idea of mixed-race, or "hapa" (in the pidgin vernacular from Hawaii where I grew up), is something that really hasn't permeated the zeitgeist as much as I thought it would. We're still very much stuck in a binary discussion of race (ethnic), despite taking huge steps in terms of gender. Nationalism allows discussions about race to sometimes stay to the surface too much, keeping members of the discussion emotionally safe.

Something I would pose to my class is to invite my students to self-identify their "race" but distinctly separating ethnicity from culture. Then I would ask them which one is more valuable? What's better, being "American" or "_____ American", or "_________" without an American tag? Where are those who might have multiple nationalities in the conversation?

I also really want my students to develop more awareness of the hierarchy that they are a part of, ethnically and culturally speaking, and how socio-economic diversity is directly linked with (for lack of better words) skin tone, in a lot of areas of the world. Then I want to challenge them to really think about who benefits from the race vs. post-race discussions we're starting to have.
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